While the ongoing pandemic has forced many new scholars to scramble to adjust teaching and research responsibilities to the current reality, the consequent cancellation of many conferences has also left many longing for opportunities to discuss their areas of interest. When Hannah Palsa, a PhD student at Kansas State University, posted on Twitter to gauge interest in a digital discussion on Animal History, the seed for our third 2020 New Scholars digital meeting was planted. This topic is particularly timely given widespread discussions of zoonotic diseases and questions they raise about human-animal relationships. As with most discussions, these ones demand historical perspectives. Université de Montréal PhD student Catherine Paulin recently published a post on this site reflecting on this very question in light of the COVID-19 pandemic – folks interested in participating in this discussion can read it here. Some of the questions we might also consider include:
- How do we explain why studying animals in history is important to someone who may be skeptical?
- What areas still need to be explored in regards to animal history or the human-animal relationship throughout history?
New scholars digital meetings are great opportunities to connect with other graduate students, recent graduates, and postdocs with interests in environmental history, and to share and generate new ideas. This discussion will be taking place before the end of May. If you would like to participate and have other thoughts or ideas, please don’t hesitate to send them to me at the email below. Please take a look at this Doodle Poll and fill in your availability so that we can pick the time that works for the most people.
I look forward to hearing from you!
- “A Reflection on Human-Animal Relations in Light of COVID-19” by Catherine Paulin
- “The Pandemic is Not a Natural Disaster” by Kate Brown
Title image credit: John Vachon
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